Mar 03 2008

How Bio-Fueled Cars Could Lead to an Increase in Obesity

I ran errands this afternoon. As I trekked down the highway on my way home, past a few big box stores, then farmers’ frozen fields (yes, it’s still very much winter here in Upstate NY), I realized my stomach was growling, and I smelled the very distinctive and enticing odor of — french fries!

No — there were no fast food restaurants anywhere nearby. A few gas stations, a snow-covered golf course — but nothing that could possibly be a source for the french fry smell.

Further, I could smell them for several miles… and I realized that the car in front of me was the source… using bio-fuel made from old vegetable cooking oil. I was actually relieved to figure it out.

But I realized what a problem that was for me. That smell really made me crave french fries! I really REALLY wanted some french fries! The biggest problem for me is the fact that I’ve been working hard for several months to lose some weight. I’ve been successful so far, but that’s because I’ve kept myself from getting near temptation very often….

And all that made me think…. We have a major obesity problem in this country. In my own work, I hear frequently from doctors who get frustrated that their overweight patients somehow expect to be cured of diseases that have been caused by their extra poundage…

Childhood obesity is epidemic. Children are sicker, even developing type II diabetes which I’m told was highly unusual until just a few years ago.

So what will become of these people who are trying to lose weight if vegetable-oil fueled cars take to the road in larger numbers? If our world begins to smell like french fries?

I don’t have the answers! And I could never seriously suggest that alternative fuels aren’t a whole lot better option than the options we seem to have right now — pouring liquid gold middle-east sourced gasoline into our cars.

But it’s worth a second thought, don’t you think? Or does that then lead us to the question about solar-powered cars and skin cancer?

I’m just sayin’ ….

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